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Senator Eric P. Lesser and Representative Brian M. Ashe to speak

The “Dementia Friendly” initiative, active across the state of Massachusetts as well as the country, helps communities better understand and relate to individuals who suffer from Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. JGS Lifecare in Longmeadow, along with the Longmeadow Council on Aging and Glenmeadow Retirement Community, have come together to form the Dementia Friendly (DF) Longmeadow Initiative Team to facilitate educational programs, training and awareness for the Longmeadow community about Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia. The goal is to make Longmeadow a Dementia Friendly community.

The public is invited to attend the kick-off of a yearlong series of events on Tuesday, January 9, from 5–7 p.m. at JGS Lifecare, 770 Converse Street, Longmeadow in the Gloth Family Auditorium.

The program will include remarks from Senator Eric P. Lesser and Representative Brian M. Ashe, as well as core team members of the DF Longmeadow Initiative team. Emily Kearns, coordinator for Dementia Friendly Massachusetts, will present about the benefits of a community becoming dementia friendly.

Mary-Anne Schelb, director of community relations for JGS Lifecare who spearheaded the DF Longmeadow Initiative Team, said, “We encourage members of the community, local business owners, agency leaders and other professionals to come and learn what the ‘Dementia Friendly Initiative’ is all about, and how they can play a role in making it a reality in Longmeadow.”

She continued, “By working together through better understanding, we will be supporting individuals living with dementia as well as their friends and families. A ‘Dementia Friendly’ community is informed, safe and respectful, thus enabling people living with dementia and those who care about them to live full, engaged lives.”

The event is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served. Registration is appreciated; call Mary-Anne Schelb at 413-567-6212 ext. 3105.